5 Factors that Affect Your Homeowners Insurance Premiums

home-2095258_640House hunting can be quite the process but finally closing on the house you’ve always wanted makes the tedious process worth the while. Now that you have a home you should probably insure your investment. The following factors can affect the price of your homeowner’s insurance premium:

Home Features and Characteristics
The age of your home along with the type of structure, roof, wiring, garage and more can all affect the insurance premium. For example, older homes usually cost more to insure.

We’ve heard it before, but it’s all about location, location, location. Your insurance premium and rate can be affected if you live close to a fire station, are often exposed to extreme weather conditions such as hurricanes and tornadoes or you live in a neighborhood that is more prone to crime and theft.

Protective Devices
While other items on this list tend to increase your premiums, the following can help lower them. Alarm systems, smoke and carbon dioxide detectors, fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems and deadbolt locks can lower your insurance costs.

Personal Factors
Such as smoking and credit score can affect your homeowner’s insurance costs as well. Usually smokers tend to pay more while a good credit history can lower the amount you pay for insurance.

Claim History
Just like car insurance, a history of claims means that you could pay a higher premium for your homeowner’s insurance coverage.


Here’s what to expect when looking at a typical homeowners insurance policy:

Your policy may differ in structure, but most policies contain the following sections:

  • Declaration Page

Typically, the first page within the policy contains summary information like the name and address of the insured, the dollar amount of coverage, description of insured property, cost of the insurance, name of the insurance company and their contact information.

  • Definitions

The definition page lists and explains the meanings of the various terms used within the policy.

  • Coverage

The coverage section explains and details the protection in your homeowners insurance policy for property such as house, structure and contents along with liability including bodily injury and/or property damage to others.

  • Exclusions

This section provides information and explanation of what is not covered under property and liability by your insurance policy.

  • Conditions

This section usually outlines each party’s responsibilities under the policy terms. The procedures to settle any losses, claims or disputes are detailed within this section.

  • Endorsements

Any and all amendments or attachments that alter the standard coverage provided by your policy can be found in this section. Some additional endorsements include flood and earthquake protection and require an additional premium.

Summer Cleaning and Maintenance Checklist:

birdhouse-2427217_1280With the temperatures rapidly rising into the 90-degree range and summer holidays just around the corner, get your home up to snuff, comfortable and ready for that big family barbeque. Here is a quick cleaning and maintenance list to get your home looking, feeling and smelling great for all season long. After all, a clean home is a happy home!

For your home:

  • Make sure to get an air conditioning tune-up and replace any dusty filters.
  • Check the batteries and functionality of all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Inspect your roof for damaged or missing shingles and leaks. Detecting a small problem now prevents a larger, leakier problem in the future.
  • Wash your windows if you haven’t already. Nothing can freshen up the outside of your home and provide great curb appeal like sparkling windows.
  • Clean out those gutters to help with the appearance and curb appeal of your home.
  • Pressure washing the exterior of your home annually is another way to show that you take pride in your home and the way it looks.
  • If you have a deck and/or porch now is a great time to inspect them for possible repairs such as replacing rotten boards and pinning down nails that stick out. They may also need polishing or a new coat of stain.
  • Don’t forget to clean and shine up the grill!


Don’t forget the yard:

  • Add an additional layer of mulch to aid in weed control. Extra mulch also helps your garden retain moisture in the heat and gives your plants a chance to grow.
  • Patch any cracks and holes in the driveway. A good pressure wash also freshens up that aging driveway.  
  • Primp and prune your plants especially those around the AC unit. Clear away all foliage within 18-inches of the sides of the unit and at least three feet above. The better the air circulation the more efficient your unit can provide comfortable living and savings.
  • Look for leaks from hoses, faucets and the sprinkler system. Even small leaks can add up to big costs.
  • Plan your watering schedule. An ideal watering schedule trains your plants to endure dryer days by promoting the growth of deep and strong roots. To achieve this, you can water deeply a few times a week versus lightly every day.
  • Leave the dirt outside and get two doormats for the main entry and one doormat for all other entries. Sweep out the garage consistently to avoid tracking dirt back in.